After a VERY slow start to 2023, there are early signs of life in the local residential real estate market. Pent-up demand? Warming weather (well, not over the past two weeks)? Buyers’ confidence buoyed by interest rates being held? Whatever the reason, the spring market is here. And it’s a welcome sight.

What a difference a year makes

It’s now been a year since prices peaked and to say that things have changed slightly since is the understatement of the century. In fact, there’s been so much change that everyone is still figuring out quite what the new normal is. The dust is still settling. Grace, patience, and flexibility are essential to ensure everyone gets what they need. The world is infinitely more pleasant when people have manners.

To illustrate what I’m talking about, here are some examples:

When submitting an offer, please respect the desired length of the irrevocable period stated in the listing; and if you aren’t (and it’s already later in the evening), make sure you stay up, too. It isn’t fair to ask one side to make a late decision only for you to then have gone to bed.

Please don’t submit any (insultingly) lowball, ‘Hail Mary’ bids to ‘feel them out’. Sellers are staying strong and respecting their ‘minimum’ number.

Please don’t submit a viewing request for 11:00 pm. I shouldn’t even have to say that.

Please appreciate that, when selling, it isn’t reasonable to expect offers to come in without any conditions. That’s so 2021-2022. Offers conditional upon finance, appraisal value, inspections, sale of property, etc. are very normal now. If you’re only going to accept a firm offer, know that you will be waiting a while… a long while. Instead, be realistic and flexible. Work in good faith and be cooperative.

Simple, really. Who knew that following the Golden Rule could work its way even into real estate negotiations?

Where are we headed?

I don’t have a crystal ball. Nobody does (despite how passionately they may plead the sense and logic of their prognostications).

Will the number of transactions and average price in the London & St Thomas area increase again in March? I think it just might and stay tuned to find out.

Exciting times ahead.

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